Poor Thank Pope for Encyclical

Refugees in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Refugees in the Democratic Republic of Congo. (photo: Aid to the Church in Need)

Stating that he was writing on behalf of the world’s poor, Father Joaquin Alliende, the international president of Aid to the Church in Need, has praised Pope Benedict XVI’s new encyclical Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth).

Reports Zenit:

Father Joaquin Alliende stated this in an open letter to the Pope as a response to the encyclical “Caritas in Veritate,” which was released to the public last week.

The priest explained his perspective, as one who listens to “the cries of the poor from over 140 different countries.”

He affirmed that he wrote the letter on their behalf, to express gratitude for the encyclical’s cry “against the scandal of injustice.”

Some Catholic American analysts have criticized the new encyclical, arguing that it has an unwarranted tilt in favor of interventionist economics. In contrast, Father Alliende says Caritas in Veritate is focused not on technical solutions to specific economic problems like the current global financial crisis but rather on the ethical framework within which such problems must be addressed.

“Caritas in Veritate” opens up “the horizons of practical brotherhood and solidarity,” he noted, and in it “there shines the essential truth of human friendship.”

The agency director acknowledged that the encyclical responds to “crucial questions” such as: “Can the inhabitants of this earth live together as brothers? Can those in greatest need be put first among us all?”

In the midst of the worldwide financial crisis, he continued, the document points out that “justice and solidarity are not achieved simply by making financial adjustments.”

“Rather than changing laws and regulations,” the priest wrote to the Holy Father, “you call for a firm ethical decision, in a spirit of national and global harmony.”